Home - is where I want to be / But I guess I'm already there /I come home -
she lifted up her wings /
Guess that this must be the place...
- Talking Heads, "Naive Melody"

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Leek and Potato Soup

This marks the start of Project Soup, and I chose it purely because I had two beautiful leeks in my refrigerator. The supply of those tends to be spotty; when I see good ones at the supermarket, I buy them, then figure out what to do with them. Which usually means soup.

I don't usually make this soup to a recipe, but thought that I ought to start the project off right. The results were certainly different than I would have come up with; my L&P soup is much, much thicker, and less seasoned. I like my soup to be just this side of mashed potatoes; I believe next time I will use a method more like hers, but with a different balance of liquid to potato.

I have not yet gotten back in the habit of photographing my dinners. I took this picture at work. It will have to serve double-duty as my 365 pic, because it's the only one I took that day.

Leek and Potato Soup

2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 large onion, preferably Spanish, chopped (or 1-2 more leeks)
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
3 leeks, white and light green parts, split lengthwise, washed, and thinly sliced
1 large russet potato, peeled and cubed
6 thyme sprigs (I used dried)
2 fresh sage leaves (optional)
4 c chicken broth or water
3 c whole milk or water*
optional toppings: minced fresh parsley, sage, tarragon, or marjoram; snipped fresh chives; grated Parmesan or Gruyere; croutons; truffle oil

Melt the butter in a Dutch oven or soup pot over low heat. Add the onion and garlic and stir until they glisten with butter, then season with salt and white pepper, cover, and cook 10 minutes or until soft but not colored.

Add the remaining ingredients, increase the heat, and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer, mostly covered, 30-40 minutes or until vegetables are soft. Adjust seasoning to taste. Puree (or don't) with a blender or immersion blender, or just mash it all up a bit, serve and garnish.

* Really now - isn't there just a slight bit of difference in the results depending on which you use?!

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